Haystack Peak, Southwest Face, 5/15

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Nick Stayner
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2005 9:25 pm
Location: Bozeman, MT/Jackson, WY

Haystack Peak, Southwest Face, 5/15

Postby Nick Stayner » Mon May 16, 2005 3:12 pm

I snowboarded the southwest face of Haystack Pk. in the Salt River Range on Sunday, 5/15. I followed an incredibly deep path of avalanche debris in the bottom of the gully for quite a ways to a point where the southwest face funneled into three chutes. I chose the rightmost, which appeared to be the most filled in. From there, it was smooth sailing up recent wet slide debris to within 200' of the summit, where the snowpack rotted out until I attained the ridge. I hung out on the summit, snapping shots and waiting for the snow to corn out a bit. Of course I became a bit anxious with the gorgeous southwest face below my feet and strapped in after about 30 minutes. and proceeded to ride one of the most combative, diverse runs of my life. I made a few scratchy turns down the south ridge, then traversed way out onto the SW face to the most sun-affected snow. I encountered rock hard suncrust, sun-softened butter, gargantuon to baseball-sized wet slide debris, and rotten mush. Because the most appealing fall lines were completely covered in wet slide debris, I wouldn't recommend a descent of the SW face until good melt-freeze has made the run more uniform. A beautiful, direct ascent/descent.

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